I love anything custard-y, so bread pudding is high on my list of things to make. It’s a really versatile dish that can be made sweet or savory and varied with all sorts of additions, so it can easily be modified to incorporate whatever local fruits or vegetables are in season or in your freezer. I save the heel ends of loaves and odd pieces of stale bread (always whole grain, of course) in a plastic bag in the freezer. Then when the bag is full, I make my bread pudding. This week I made one with wild black raspberries that I picked and froze last summer.
Here’s the basic recipe for a sweet bread pudding with fruit.
Place 4 cups of cubed bread into a greased 9×9 baking dish. Mix in 1 cup of berries or chopped fruit.
Beat together 2 cups of milk, two eggs, 6 tablespoons brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract. Pour over the bread and fruit. Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes.
It’s so tasty, it doesn’t last long!
Here’s my analysis of how local my raspberry bread pudding was:
Bread – mostly from a bakery in Maine, not too far away, but likely most of the ingredients that went into the bread were not from anywhere in New England.
Berries – from my backyard
Milk and eggs – from local farms
Sugar, cinnamon, vanilla – from far away tropical places. I could have substituted local honey or maple syrup for the sugar.